Tamil Movies | Trailers | Slideshows | Top Ten | Interviews
Movie Articles | Classic Movies | Movie Personalities | Tech&Tech | Contact Us
Behindwoods Logo
Directors Special – Do they lose glory without assistants?
Behind every successful man is a woman, well not always. Not at least in the case of Kollywood hit makers. Ace directors who delivered smash hit movies at the box office could not have done so without their assistant directors. There are numerous instances to prove our point though, if you are skeptical. And if that is not enough, the miserable performance of the movies of veteran directors devoid of their assistants stand proof for this.


One of the ace directors of Kollywood, Balachander had quite a handful of talented assistants to his credit. Prominent of them being Vasanth and Charan. Vasanth’s movies always had a Balachander touch to it and on the other hand Charan learnt the nuances of movie making from his Guru. Though Balachander is a single-man-army, the hands of his assistants in his hits are definitely not to be disregarded.


The classic example of a hit-director’s unbecoming is Bharathiraja. His golden times were during the late 80s and 90s when he had quite a few gem of assistants with him including Manivannan, Bhagyaraj, and Manobala. Bhagyaraj quit him for good and went on to make movies on his own eventually surpassing his Guru’s excellence in story telling. Manivannan and Manobala left Bharathiraja subsequently robbing him of his luster.

Following this, the movies that ensued Mudal Mariyadai did not sustain at the box office, neither did they exemplify the intellectual storytelling that Bharathiraja was conversant with.

The Others

Pavithran’s loss of his assistant Shankar backfired miserably on his career eventually making it non-existent. However, his assistant Shankar is every producer’s bet and is a dream director of every artiste in the industry. There are exemptions to this trend too. Bala and Cheran who served as assistants to Balumahendra and K.S. Ravikumar did not do any harm to the careers of their gurus though. They went on to direct pretty good movies and are noted for their trend setting movies in Tamil.

Shankar’s assistant Balaji Sakthivel pulled off a mega hit with his Kadal and Vasathabalan is busy with his Veyil. Interestingly enough, they directed movies for their guru Shankar’s banner only.

Assistant director trend now

Though that is history, assistant directors these days are shrewder than hungry for learning some direction lessons from their bosses. Cheran does not prefer to involve his assistants during his story discussions because he feels otherwise. That his assistants have nothing to contribute to his story.
Ramesh Kanna has a different perspective for not involving assistants. He would rather discuss his stories with his friends than his assistants because he thinks his assistants would save a good scene for their own projects.


Bhagyaraj, in a public function, openly confessed his fear of discussing his projects with his assistants. He stated that he was shocked to see certain comic sequences in a recently released movie, which were his own. He realized that Vadivelu who enacted the scene had nothing to do with this and it was only because of his assistant who eventually was the assistant for the other movie as well.
Sharathkumar stated that assistant directors should provide innovative ideas rather than keeping their ideas for themselves for their own venture.

Assistants and Tamil cinema’s future

It used to be months of never ending wait to enroll into a director’s stable as an assistant director those days. That is over though; just a diploma from the film institute is enough to impress the personalities these days. Only when dedicated individuals who are ambitious and conscious about their work come into the scene will Tamil cinema excel in story telling.

News Link Trisha seeks permission to fall in love
Other top stories
Varalaru vs Vallavan – Diwali movies sales report Vijay: Slow and steady to win the race
Top 10 movies at the box office – Serial Vs Serial Killer Count down of the top 10 songs - who made it to the No.1?
Star marriages: Who’s next in line? To Rajini sir, with love…
Movie review: V V gains with some pains! Kamal on his journey through Life, Movies and Rajini!!
Sivaji - Package Vettaiyadu Villaiyadu Package
Behindwoods.com © 2004-06 ; For advertising contact behindw@behindwoods.com